B. Scott Holmes

Just trying to stay alive and keep my sideburns too

Sand Springs Station - Pony Express

Sand Springs Station (N39 16 30.6 W118 24 48.5)

About 20 miles east of Fallon on US 50 an unimproved road leads to Sand Mountain and Sand Springs Pony Express Station. The station has a number of interpretive signs. In March of’ 1860 Bolivar Roberts, J.G. Kelley and others built the station. James McNaughton was station keeper for a while before he became a rider.

The striking sand dune known as Sand Mountain is highly visible from a distance. The mountin of clean, white sand is a single dune 500′ high and 1½ miles long surrounded by lesser dunes. The mountin is formed as sand blown by the prevailing SW wind is dropped at the end of the valley, where the terrain forces the wind upwward. The dunes begain forming about 4000 years ago after the vast, ancient Lake Lahonton receded from the valleys of the Truckee, Carson and Walker Rivers.

SAND SPRINGS STATION: NR, 11/21/80, (number not available)

Several sources identify Sand Springs as a station, including the 1861 mail contract. [39] Like Cold Springs, this station existed due to the construction efforts of Bolivar Roberts, J. G. Kelly, and their crew in March of 1860 for the C.O.C. & P.P. Express Co. [40] James McNaughton managed station operations for a time. On October 17, 1860, Richard Burton recorded his negative views of the roofless, dirty structure and its staff, stating that it was "roofless and chairless, filthy and squalid, with a smoky fire in one corner, and a table in the centre of an impure floor, the walls open to every wind, and the interior full of dust." [41] Travelers found a reliable source of water at Sand Springs, but its poor quality often poisoned animals and probably made people ill. [42]

In addition to the Pony Express, other individuals and businesses utilized Sand Springs until World War Two. The telegraph came through the area, and the site served as a freight, milling, and ranching center. Structural ruins from many of these activities still exist around the springs. [43] In 1976, the site was determined eligible for the National Register. [44] By 1981, the station was listed on the National Register of Historic Places and was structurally stabilized. This source locates the station's ruins near Sand Mountain, about three-fourths of a mile north of Highway 50. [45]

39.281169891357, -118.410644531250